Meet Unko Sensei, the poop teacher making kanji fun for Japanese kids


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/05/25/meet-unko-sensei-the-poop-tea.html


Unko Sensei in the wild
#2

They have two perfectly good alphabets, why can’t they just outlaw kanji?


#3

Katakana is for foreign words, right? Hirigana was brought over from China (bc I can read some Hirigana). Kanji is their only true nationally developed alphabet?


#4

Kanji is the Chinese, Hiragana is the phonetic writing for Japanese words.


#5

I knew I’d been wasting my time as a teacher.


#6

It occurs to me that by now, somewhere out there, there is surely a calculus assignment challenging students to use the rotated solids method to determine the volume of various idealized poops.


#7

@RHK already provided the correct answer on this.

Sort of but not exactly. See

Written Japanese will include a mix of kanji and hiragana both, its not just for phonetic writing or a substitute for kanji.


#8

Yea, I think of katakana as being like italics. They’re for foreign words, for emphasis, for sound effects, even corporate logos. Both hiragana and katakana come from the same roots. If you look at ka or ri, they look pretty nearly the same in both.


#9

Say what now?


#10

Both katakana and hiragana (kana) are simplified and syllabatic forms of various kanji. Kanji are largely (but not exclusively) Chinese in origin.

Katakana is often used for foreign or loan words and onomotaepia but not exclusively.

It’s complicated and sometimes makes no damn sense.

That’s coincidence more than anything I think. Ka in both forms has the same root kanji (加) as does ri (利). Many kana don’t share the same kanji root between the two writing systems.


#11

Since I’ve been watching lots of Showa era movies lately, I’ve noticed the katakana for “wo” ヲ far more than in current print usage.


#12

#13

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.